Posts Tagged ‘conviction’

Today, I continue to share personal thoughts on the transformation of awareness, frame, and purpose that occur as spiritual growth.  Personal testimonies of sacred events are not given for ones private amusement; and once truth has been bestowed or imparted, those who accept it are compelled also to share it.  However, the difficulty of preaching and speaking the truth well is not to be taken lightly; (so to speak) you can not separate the wet from the water, yet, the one who speaks must rightly divide.  For a few days, now, I have been in correspondence with believers in Brussels, Belgium.  In responding to a comment (actually, a full Web-site presentation, Why We Do Not Keep To A Sabbath Or A Sunday Or Lord’s Day #6 Sunday Or The Lord’s Day Posted on September 7, 2015 at https://christadelphians.wordpress.com/) sent to me in reply to my blog, (08/20/2015) Authority, Dispensation and Unity, I stated that, my Sabbath-keeping is on the basis of my faith and acceptance of Jesus Christ who is titled, Lord of the Sabbath.  When cautioned that, keeping the Sabbath law obliges a believer to the whole law, such that failing to obey in one point, a believer becomes accountable and guilty as having broken all the law, I made a brief reference to my personal testimony of having seen Jesus Christ, and that it was not through my keeping the law that this sacred event had occurred.  The following exchange was posted:

 

Free Christadelphians:  Belgian Ecclesia Brussel – Leuven

You write “He is alive, and I have seen him.”
For sure Jesus did really die and was taken out of the dead after three days. At that time several people got to see him but today would surprise us. Where and when would you have seen Jesus?

 

Michael Andrew Williams

Within the framework of eternal life and spirit, when and where become irrelevant. It seems like moments ago, however, I refer to an experience just outside of Philadelphia, PA, here in the United States, more than 30 years ago. Following the example of Paul, I decline to boast, or dwell upon revelations. Besides, one hardly knows what to say, time and circumstance being no true teachers.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech:  (2 Corinthians 3:  12, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Recounting Past Sins? (03/04/2015); Not A Matter Of Opinion? (04/24/2014); What Faith Makes Possible (04/25/2014); Miracles and Visitations? (03/03/2014); All Lying Forbidden? (03/04/2014); Miracles are Sacred Events (12/20/2013); Resisting Sin (12/21/2013); Experience Is Not Evidence? (05/05/2013); Church Mandatory? (05/06/2013)

 

“Leuven”, I have been continuing to reflect upon my earlier response to your questions regarding my personal testimony.  I feel I have been curt, and short with you.  I do not usually share details of my personal testimony, for such things are easily misinterpreted.  They work like miracles, that often will trigger spiritual confusion, overwhelm the imagination, and generate uncertainty and fear, rather than nourish faith.   Hearers are to agree, the substance of the event is not I, but Christ.  Nonetheless, by way of apology for any rudeness, and edification for the body in Jesus’ name, I am willing to share the following points:

(1.)  Sacred events (we say, miracles) and divine visitations do not answer all our questions with finality so much as they energize and redirect our consciousness; confirm our faith; amplify the place of inquiry as a platform for our interactions with divinity; and further call forth gratitude and humility as aspects of new relationship.  Consider again the experience of Daniel, answered twice by Gabriel with sacred knowledge, yet, having only the comprehension of one Christ might call “a little child.”

(2.)  Because of ones personal testimony they may operate with greater confidence and holy boldness, however, there are disciplines and restraints that also must be in place.  Presumption is to be avoided.  Thus, just as we see David anointed by Samuel to be king over Israel, and having to wait 40 years (a generation) to receive the crown, those “born again” or receiving spiritual gifts today, also must endure growth, preparation and testing.

(3.)  Given I am able to see that my peculiar experiences of sacred truth conform to examples, guidelines, and standards that appear in the holy writings—yet, have not been on the basis of commitment through old covenants and law—my present response to the things from GOD revealed in Christ are not solely upon the basis of carnal, material and social features; religious ceremonies, customs, rituals and traditions; or the demands of congregations, denominations, and institutions.

(4.)  To ask when? and where? seeking archeological exactness and precision for sacred events (the scientific method!) should be held as specious.  Ask what day or hour David struck Goliath with a stone; it does not matter.  Ask, as did the youngsters incarcerated in a juvenile facility when I shared my testimony, What color was he!  Ask as did a teacher from the Jehovah’s Witnesses, what was he wearing?  The sacred substance of the event is what, first, must be discerned, then, applied.

(5.)  On the one hand, sacred events are unforgettable, and have a continuing freshness as though they occurred just moment ago.  On the other hand, they are not retained through the mechanisms of knowledge, intellect, recall and self-will.  The events of sacred testimony appear and operate as further revelation, and eternal substance from divinity. 

(6.)  For those who accept that their eternal life has already begun, and may only be interrupted by the sleep of death for a brief period, applying the frameworks of time and space now are altered.  The blood from the cross is flowing over the barricades reared up as ages, lives, and nations through the medium of sacred truth that is intangible, invisible and unseen, yet, actual, concrete and real.

There are many other points that should be carefully considered, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example:  (7.)  In my experience of seeing Jesus, I was unsure how to proceed; so I held back, with the idea, he would speak, and lead in such a way as to tell me what to do, and how to reply.  However, as I stood waiting for him to speak, I began to think on his carrying the cross for me and other sinners; and my mind’s eye saw him fall under its weight.  Just as I realized that a tear had begun to stream down my face, he spoke, asking, Why are you crying?  I was staggered!  Surely he knew my very thoughts; surely, he had seen sinners weep repeatedly!  I cautioned myself, again:  He is not “playing” with your mind.  He expects you to answer.  Answer now, or be forced to answer later in final judgment  before the entire universe.  I did the instant replay in my thoughts, and began to examine every detail of what he had said, his manner, its tone and texture.  His posture was regal and imperial, yet, instead of, Get on your knees, you’re a sinner!, he had spoken to me with tender concern.  I saw no grimace, frown or scowl.  I could hear no disdain, disrespect, or rejection in his voice.  More than this, I could feel virtue flowing from him, physically touching me.  It was this, an experience of his humility, that has convicted me, and prompts me to proclaim, He lives!  Where you have not seen him for yourself, get ready to see him.  For the promise is that every eye will see, and every tongue confess.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

 
THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Accuracy of the Scriptures, conviction, faith, and spiritual knowledge are topics, today.  Also, there is more on adornment, church attendance, and men removing their hats in respect to GOD.  The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “sky” (Level 1 with 137 points, a member since April 21, 2010) posted the following:

 

Why would anyone choose to use a bible that isn’t accurate?

How can anybody use a bible that adds writings to it that are not from the holy scriptures? How can anybody use a bible that adds some books to it from the apocrypha but does not even include all the books from the apocrypha? How can people use a bible that includes gods name Jehovah in some verses but does not include the name Jehovah to all the verses where the name belongs?

Here are some writings I know of added to most bibles that are not part of the scriptures.

—–Verses added—–

Matthew:17:21
Matthew:18:11
Matthew:23:14
Mark:7:16
Mark:9:44
Mark:9:46
Mark:11:26
Mark:15:28
Mark:16:9-20
Luke:17:36
Luke:23:17
John:5:4
John:7:53-8:11
Acts:8:37
Acts:15:34
Acts:24:7
Acts:28:29
Romans:16:24

The only bible I know of that does not add any of these writings and includes gods name where it belongs and brings the original meaning of the Hebrew/Aramaic and Greek scriptures is the new world translation of the holy scriptures.

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Should Men Take Their Hats Off (05/15/2014)—(5.)  For many, wearing a hat in church is an issue centered in ideas about gender equality and social justice, rather than upon reverence and right respect to GOD, or agreement and unity with the congregation of worshipers.  Therefore, attitudes, behavior, defiance, misconduct, pride, respect, and selfishness are foremost in their considerations.  Yet, just as there are warnings against the crown of pride, there are various expressions throughout the holy writings that speak to the idea of “power on ones head.”  Included are the crown of anointing oil, a crown of glory, the crown of life, the crown of rejoicing, the  crown of righteousness, the crown of thorns, and the crown of twelve stars.  Commanded to don the whole armor of GOD, believers are to continually wear, and never remove, aspects of divinity visible only to GOD such as the helmet of salvation.  Power on ones head is especially seen through the mark of GOD, a seal upon ones forehead indicating divine authority, ownership, and a sacred, personal bond as joint-heir with Christ.  Persons who appear to be worthless to the church because of their outward appearance nevertheless should be respected and treated as having unseen accomplishments and victories in Christ.  Men are further cautioned against judging, and jumping to conclusions on the basis of appearances, for women who appear to be uncovered often are wearing hair pieces and wigs.  The use of the prayer shawl among modern Christians and Messianic Jews allows one to create a closet and secret chamber for prayer (we say, tabernacle).

(6.)  Church attendance has become a matter of self-expression for many believers.  The broad range of motives for church-going now includes such interests as amusement and entertainment, family bonding and home management, meet-and-greet for singles, self-discovery and self-improvement as well as re-socialization of those from prison, substance abuse therapy and treatment.  Many miss the fact that church attendance is vital to properly realizing the corporate nature of mankind in relationship to GOD.   The church is to be understood as a unique body containing life called into existence by GOD, and having many different members that function in various ways to accomplish many diverse purposes.  The needs of the whole body as a single unit must be ones focus, rather than the needs of the self.  Just as in marriage, neither the husband nor the wife may claim greater importance than their partner, and their considerations must always put their union first (not the children, not the self), believers are to make commitment wherein the spiritual needs of the congregation and others are put ahead of ones personal needs.  Several of the most difficult aspects of Christ as a model for created beings and living creatures must come into practice:  doing ones duty (correctly completing things that absolutely must be done—like it, don’t like it), humility (acknowledgment of authority, duty performed and required from others, hierarchy, and showing respect to others), and sacrifice (damage or loss willingly endured to display commitment, respect, and submission; something of value destroyed in order to turn away divine wrath, to express reverence, or petition for lenience).  Those controlled and dominated by appetite, feelings and intellect rarely experience the church as a sanctuary, a place of divine presence.  In ignorance, they behave as if at home, or out on the streets.  However, once born again, all are entered into a process of growth and transformation.  Every mature believer will operate with the motive of pleasing GOD and honoring Christ.  Their willingness to serve within the household of GOD will be displayed both in what they do, and in what they abstain from doing.  See John 7:  24, James 2:  1-13, 1st Samuel 16:  1-14, Mark 11:  15-17, Romans 12:  1-21, 1st Corinthians 12:  1-31, 2nd Timothy 4:  8, Hebrews 10:  19-29 and Ephesians 6:  10-18, KJV.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.  He that reproveth a scorner getteth to himself shame:  and he that rebuketh a wicked man getteth himself a blot.  Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee:  rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee.  Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser:  teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.  The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom:  and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.  For by me thy days shall be multiplied, and the years of thy life shall be increased.  (Proverbs 9:  6-11, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  A “Good” Verse? (05/09/2014); What GOD Demands (05/10/2014); Bible and Spirit (04/26/2014); Personality? (04/27/2014); The Nature of Scripture (03/27/2014); Divine Sleep (03/28/2014); Reading Only The Red Part (11/19/2012); According to the Eternal Purpose (11/20/2012)

 

“sky”, many mature Christian believers now choose to use several different copies and versions of the Bible all at the same time during their studies along with commentaries, and other source materials.  For such believers, there are no issues regarding the accuracy, completeness, or fluency of their translations and supplements.  Conviction is not by “the letter,” and on the basis of what appears on a page.  Rather, ones endowment of the Holy Spirit determines what a reader will take away as continuing the ministry of Jesus Christ.

Through their baptism (death of ones inborn spirit, rebirth from divine DNA, so to speak), a person receives aspects of the same spirit matter that operated in the creation of the universe, and that resided in Jesus Christ as an incarnation of GOD.   Those who are born again must learn and “grow up” again by continuing to meet life challenges in the earth.  In addition to spiritual knowledge, and new skills that come by observance of sacred practices (we say, sacraments), believers must develop discernment, a form of divine judgment wherein ones own spirit matter is applied as the standard to recognize the spirit content within events, experiences, objects, operations, other persons, purposes, things spoken, and utterance.

There is a lot more to be said, correctly understood, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, in presumption and pride, many respond to the holy writings using only emotion, imagination, intellect, logic, reason, and “science,” finite gifts among created beings, and living creatures.  The inseparable aspects of divinity now available through Jesus (such as faith, forbearance, holiness, joy, longsuffering, love, wisdom, and wrath against sin) are ignored, improperly exercised, neglected, and overlooked.).  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your meekness and faith.

For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night.  But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation.  For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ,  (1st Thessalonians 5:  7-9, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Angels, discernment, hospitality, Lot, sacrifice, and salvation are topics, today.  Also, there is more on loving GOD before we actually see him.  The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using ID “Dexter” (Level 1 with 95 points, a member since May 04, 2014) posted the following:

 

Before Lot offered his 2 daughters to the crowd, had he known that the 2 men were Angels ? When He first knew they were Angels ?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Loving Someone Unseen? (05/03/2014)—(5.)  For many of us today, behaving with respect, love, and acceptance toward someone unseen, someone we have never met fact to face, is practiced daily by millions through modern computer media, and telephone.  In addition to social conventions of courtesy, etiquette, and good manners, many are disposed to be positive with strangers, and in all their relationships because of their own emotional, intellectual and psychological makeup as well as their own upbringing and “home training.”  For Christian believers, just as ones discipline, knowledge, and orientation for ministry and priesthood are established through the content of sacred spirit matter from GOD, the appetite and hunger for Christ is permanently implanted, and firmly rooted to grow.  One may first be drawn to Christ by curiosity, the same way Moses was drawn to turn aside, and see the burning bush.  Moses only wanted a closer look at an unusual sight, and was not expecting to have an extraordinary experience of divine revelation.  Similarly, most believers do not first turn their feelings and thoughts to Christ with an intent of making a lifetime commitment.  Conviction and total surrender may seem to appear suddenly, however, before baptism, confirmation, and sanctification are complete there first will be multiple experiences of encounter with divine love and truth through Jesus Christ.  By coming to know sacred history, divine law, and eternal purposes, believers may first be exposed to GOD as Law Giver, Covenant Maker, and Eternal King.  Once they come into a mature acceptance of duty, and the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit, they begin to know GOD in intimate relationship as sons, daughters, and joint-heirs with Christ.  Consider Deuteronomy 6:  4-9, Deuteronomy 10:  12, Isaiah 61:  8, Ephesians 4:  11-16 and 1st John 3:  16-24, KJV.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;  Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;  Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;  Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.  Bless them which persecute you:  bless, and curse not.  Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.  Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate.  Be not wise in your own conceits.  Recompense to no man evil for evil.  Provide things honest in the sight of all men.  If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.  Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath:  for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.  (Romans 12:  10-19, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  (10/15/2013) Balaam (10/15/2013); About Sabbath (10/16/2013); A Visit from an Angel? (10/20/2013); The Head Not The Tail? (10/21/2013); Circumcision and Promise? (07/16/2013); The Bible and Stupid People (07/17/2013); Origin of Baptism? (06/22/2013); Those Who Never Heard? (06/07/2013); If You Are Sent…? (06/08/2013)

 

“Dexter”, here are a few points regarding the deliverance of Lot that may further enable you to overcome error, and nourish the Spirit of Christ in those who believe:

(1.)  Godly hospitality and spiritual discernment only appear through interactions and operations of the same spirit matter that are the makeup of divinity.  After living as a member of the household of Abraham, Lot continued in many customs and practices introduced to him by the Patriarch, the Friend of GOD.   In Lot’s day, mankind (even the prophets) experienced the Holy Spirit as a temporal power in visitation—something that would come and go, and would only last for a time.  The Spirit could appear in dreams, in the various forms of angelic messengers, and in human form.  Not until after the Ascension of Jesus Christ would the Spirit abide continuously within the awareness and spiritual makeup of men.

(2.)  The benefit of sacrifice was clearly known and understood by Lot and his family.  Lot therefore was under a rule that even has been practiced in modern times among nations (e.g., Snowden in Russia):  Once a person comes into your home for refuge and shelter, it is the duty of the host, his family, his servants, to entertain, feed, protect, and refresh the visitor.  In the shared commitment, no cost is spared, even to the laying down of everyone’s life, because the proper receiving of a guest is also a matter of honor.

(3.)  Lot did not have the same spiritual discernment that is established through the gifts of Pentecost.  Failing to understand the danger and the divine deliverance, Lot thought to stall the angels for more time; and the heavenly messengers had to pull him and his family away taking them by their hands like stubborn children.

There is a lot more to be said, correctly put into place, and spiritually apprehended.  (For example, (4.)  Remember Lot’s wife.  Through the ministry of Jesus Christ, those who are baptized receive a fresh endowment of the spirit matter that was breathed into Adam.  With the death of ones inborn nature, and rebirth from divine DNA (so to speak), all believers are taken by their hands, and led into salvation.  However, like Lot who argued to be carried to safety in the plains instead of the mountains, many think the provision of GOD will not be correct for them.  All “born again” must gradually “grow up” again meeting the life challenges for all upon the earth.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith, and your integrity as a genuine believer.

Be not forgetful to entertain strangers:  for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.  (Hebrews 13:  2, KJV)

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

Whether sanctification always requires that Jesus must appear to all that serve in apostleship and discipleship are considered, today.  Als0, there is more on law in Christian belief.  The “Yahoo! Answers” writer using ID “Joe C Momma” (Level 3 with 2,332 points, a member since March 31, 2013) posted the following:

 

If Paul needed a personal visit from Jesus to know that Jesus was resurrected, then why wouldn’t you?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Law in Christian Belief? (09/02/2013)—(5.)  The identity of GOD as Sovereign, as Judge and as Creator is inseparable from the fixed, immutable will of GOD that we speak of as being divine law.  Many ignorantly oppose the existence of heavenly law as a device to escape divine wrath.  To such, no law means no judgment, and no judgment means no punishment.  No punishment means “free will” and license to indulge every imaginable desire and lust.  More than this, no law means no duty, no labor and necessary work as believers.  It remains that, because the law is the expressed will of GOD—conveys the being, intent and sacred purposes of GOD—to oppose divine law is sin that opposes the continued existence of GOD and of all that has been put forth as divine Creation.  While the law does not save one from sin, or eliminate and erase sin, the law does provide direction, order and structure that are needed to fully apprehend eternal life.  See Psalms 119:  1-176 and Galatians 2:  15-21, King James Version.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;  By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.  For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;  And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:  And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:  After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.  After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.  And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.  For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God.  But by the grace of God I am what I am:  and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all:  yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.  Therefore whether it were I or they, so we preach, and so ye believed.  (1st Corinthians 15:  1-11, King James Version)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Jesus and the Pharisees (07/14/2013); How Could Angels Fall? (07/15/2013); GOD Intervenes? (07/01/2013); Jericho Justified? (07/02/2013); A Relationship not Just Knowledge? (06/25/2013); Lost Without GOD? (06/26/2013); Bible Authors and Truth (06/19/2013); On Testing GOD (06/20/2013)

 

Joe, here are some points to consider that many mature Christian believers acquire through their prayerful studies of the Bible:

(1.)  From Genesis to Revelation, the holy writings document the multiple changes and perfecting of the divine inheritance upon the earth that was patterned after the priesthood of Christ in heaven.  Many of the sacred events recorded occur to signal transformation of fellowship, service, worship, and the covenant relationships of mankind and GOD.  Examples include the priesthood as seen through Abel, Moses, Job, Jonah, Eli, David and Jesus.

(2.)  As with incarnation (the appearance of GOD in and through human flesh), manifestations, miracles and angelic visitations are sacred events to fulfill divine promises, establish prophecy, clarify hallowed purpose, and continue divine law.  These things derive from divinity and grace, the person of GOD, rather than from human needs for experience or information.  

(3.)  The Apostle Paul (like believers today) had to experience new birth and re-creation wherein he was taken to new levels of what Adam had received as a son of GOD.  Paul’s awareness and intelligence continued to be limited because he remained grounded in many errors associated with GOD’s chosen instrument:  Jewish culture, law and tradition.  On the one hand, all Paul had ever believed was affirmed and certified.  On the other hand, all things became new.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended.  For example, (4.)  My personal testimony is that I have seen Jesus face-to-face.  However, Jesus has said, blessed are they that have not seen, yet have believed.  Our conviction should not go forward on the basis of human actions and sense experiences of seeing, hearing, etc.  Salvation is through discernment and realization of truth within ourselves regarding things that are entirely spirit in their being, content and substance.  Included are faith, holiness, joy, longsuffering, love, wisdom and wrath against sin.)  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

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